NORTH CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - A woman who walked out of a residential care facility and was not heard from for nearly 24 hours was allowed to come and go as she pleased, according to the facility's owner.
The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control is investigating Cabading Homes after her disappearance.
North Charleston Police say she was found safe at approximately 5 p.m. Monday afternoon at a Spruill Avenue convenience store after a clerk recognized her from a missing flier.
Authorities say the woman moved into the group home last Tuesday with the approval of her doctor and family, according to owner Allan Cabading.
"They just had a hard time with her wandering and getting out." Cabading said.
Cabading said she left the facility around 5 p.m. and told staff she was going to a fast food restaurant down the street. Cabading says his staff called police at 9:30 p.m. to report her missing.
"People can come and go in this type of facility. There's nothing we can do. If they want to go, we have to treat them like everybody else," Cabading said.
A resident of Cabading's Dorchester Road facility was found dead nine days after he was discharged from a hospital.
Leverne Reed was put in a taxi and dropped off just down the street from the group home. His body was found in some marsh a little more than a mile away.
"Reed was a fine man, loved being with him, taking care of him," Cabading said.